The Charleston-based company that owns CresCom Bank is seeking to list its stock on the Nasdaq.

Carolina Financial Corp. said Thursday that it filed the required paperwork with the Securities and Exchange Commission late Wednesday afternoon.

If the SEC "Form 10" is approved, the company would be eligible to list its common shares on the Nasdaq exchange.

"We continue to explore ways to improve the liquidity of our stock," Jerry Rexroad, CEO of Carolina Financial, said in statement. "We feel that the completion of the Form 10 and subsequent filing with the SEC is a natural step in this process."

In October, Carolina Financial began offering shares to outsiders for the first time under the ticker symbol "CARO." Shares can be bought and sold through the OTC Bulletin Board, which displays real-time quotes, prices and sales volume information for stocks that aren't listed on a national exchange.

Carolina Financial rose $2 Thursday to $39, with 100 shares trading hands.

The company announced earlier this month that it's splitting the stock, meaning its investors will get two shares for every one they hold. The move will cut the per-share price in half. It takes effect Friday.

Carolina Financial had $881 million in assets as of Dec. 31, making it the largest financial institution based in the Charleston area.

The company launched Community FirstBank in 1997 at 288 Meeting St., which remains its headquarters. It expanded later up the coast to the Grand Strand by forming Crescent Bank. CresCom was formed in 2012 when Carolina Financial merged the two lenders.

The bank is expanding. It purchased its 12th branch this week, in the Dorchester County seat of St. George, and it plans to open an office in the second quarter in Cane Bay Plantation in Berkeley County.

Carolina Financial also owns Atlanta-based Crescent Mortgage Co., which makes home loans in 43 states.

Contact John McDermott at 937-5572.